3. Industrial at-line monitoring of coagulation for yield optimization
The recovery of solids and more particularly fat and proteins as well as moisture in cheese curd affect significantly the quality of cheese and the profitability of the industrial manufacturing process. We can also refer to solids recovery rate as “vat yield” or “coagulation yield” because it measures the efficiency of coagulation and cutting phases in terms of fat and protein recovery in the curd. In addition to all technological parameters that need to be mastered to optimize ‘vat yield’ such as temperature, pH, milk formulation and heat treatment, measuring coagulation and mastering the gel firmness at cutting step are two critical aspects that can be controlled using CoaguSens™ Connect.
This application note shows results demonstrating the capacity of CoaguSens™ Connect to improve vat yield. Tests were conducted in a medium-size North-American cheddar cheese plant. Solids Recovery Rate increased from 60% to 63.3% by optimizing the cutting firmness of the curd using CoaguSens™ Connect. As a result, 16,000 L milk vats started to deliver 128 kg more cheese per vat at 39% moisture content.
Adjusting and maintaining cutting firmness to improve yield is the third stage of the optimization journey.